California Military History Program for Public Schools


Purpose:  to provide a syllabus on the history of California emphasizing the role the military played in our state.  The program will start out for 4th Grade level and eventually go to 12th Grade level.

Goal:  provide public school age children with an understanding of the unique contribution of military history.

Students learn the story of their home state, unique in American history, with emphasis on how the military, from the Spanish occupation to the present day, has influenced and shaped the state as we know it today.

  1. Students demonstrate an understanding of the different periods of military    history of the state.


  1. The Spanish Exploration and occupation of California.
  2. The Mexican Period
  3. The Civil War and California
  4. The conflicts with the Native Americans
  5. World Wars I and II
  6. The Cold War, Vietnam, current conflicts.
  7. The Military in California today.


  1. Students discuss 
  1. Famous military individuals born or who have lived in California (Patton, Fremont, Doolittle, and others)
  2. The effects of population growth in California do to wartime activities.
  3. Describe the development and locations of new industries fostered by the military such as the aerospace industry, electronics industry and other defense industries.


For the first lesson in the series we will present the history of the presidios in California and how they worked to protect the missions and the towns of Alta California.